4.24.2015

ALYOF April Goal Met!

I met my April goal to bind and label my Rainbow Mini Quilt, and couldn't be happier with the result!  I can't remember exactly how I came up with the idea for this mini quilt for the Instagram Rainbow Mini Swap.  All I knew was that I wanted to use batik fabrics, because my partner listed that she liked them, as do I.  Many "modern" quilters on IG don't seem to like batiks, but I happen to love them.  I also knew I wanted to use more cool colors of the rainbow, because my partner's favorite colors were blue, teal, and purple.  Couldn't agree more.  Well, throw in some green, and I'm a happy person.
I have wanted to make a Storm-at-Sea quilt for years now (one of the quilts in my partners inspiration photos), but that pattern wasn't quite working for me as a mini.  I stumbled upon some quilts on Instagram that used the 54-40 or Fight block (similar to the Storm at Sea pattern), but had different Shoo Fly blocks for the alternating block.  I took the idea of one of those, and tweaked it enough to work into a rainbow mini.  But because of the size and placement of the blocks in my design, I ended up piecing the quilt in rows instead of traditional blocks.  I wanted complete white "circles," which meant half-sized squares around the edges.  The hardest part was laying everything out so that the same fabrics weren't too close to each other in the different positions throughout the quilt.  I rearranged things many, many, many times.  Still not perfect, but I was running out of batiks!
I decided to use a variegated rainbow thread I've had for ages (actually bought it to quilt the Winnie-the-Pooh baby quilt I finished up in February), and to quilt it in a crosshatch pattern.  I'm not sure if that was the right choice for the quilt, to be honest, but I couldn't come up with anything better.  The backing fabric I picked out when I was shopping for all the batiks.  I liked how there were circles of color, echoing the white circles on the front of the quilt.  It turns out my partner chose the same fabric to back the quilt she made for her partner!  
Then came the fabric choice for the binding.  I wanted something that would blend with the batiks on the front, and wouldn't call too much attention to itself.  I thought about using scraps of the fabrics I had used on the front, but didn't want to have a bunch of tiny strips and seams to deal with.  I went to my local quilt shop, where there is an entire room of batik fabrics!  After auditioning a half dozen or so fabrics, I chose a rainbow batik, thinking it would give me the look of the fabric scraps, but in longer strips.  When I got it home and put it against the quilt, I wasn't sure I had made the right choice.  The colors didn't quite match the fabrics I had used, but I really didn't have it in my fabric budget to go back and try again.  Once the rainbow batik was cut into binding strips, and sewn onto the quilt, I was happy again.  It turned out how I thought (hoped) it would!
Next was designing a quilt label.  I hate writing on labels, because I get all OCD about the way my handwriting looks, and will do it over and over and never quite be happy.  My new favorite method is to create a label in Microsoft Publisher (somewhere this Visual Communications Minor is happy), print it onto white Kona fabric (that has been ironed onto freezer paper), sew it into a double-layered square, and then hand-stitch it down to the quilt (because I also hate to do any kind of needle-turn applique).  In Publisher I got to play around with the font coloring, and used a rainbow gradient for the title of the quilt, and also added some rainbow heart clipart.
It was very difficult for me to package this one up and send it off to a new home.  Perhaps someday I will make one of my very one to keep!
And now the artistic "throw it over the wooden fence in the backyard" shot...
And here's a picture of all the extras I sent along with my quilt mini.  I liked how the notebook looked like the quilt pattern.  I made an openwide pouch, a mug rug, and a magnetic bookmark all using this cute kitten fabric I found and a matching batik.  Since I like to create/design using graph paper and colored pencils, I included some for my partner.  When I was cutting out the fabrics for the quilt, I cut extra 2.5" squares from a bunch of batiks, and added those, along with a 2.5" square ruler.  And what's a rainbow swap without Skittles, rainbow Mentos, and an 8-color click pen?  And my favorite little extra from Five Below--sparkle lollipops in a rainbow of colors.

5 comments:

Anita said...

Your quilt is gorgeous!

Andree G. Faubert said...

What a lovely quilt. Your partner should be thrilled!

Suzie's Armoire said...

Thanks! Yes, my swap partner loved it.

Amanda said...

I love how it is a rainbow but not in ROYGBIV order. It looks great!

Brandy Pettit said...

I am incredibly inspired by this quilt, I also love the Storm at Sea pattern and think this would look great in fall colors too. Thank you for sharing!
~Brandy

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